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crystal said this weekend does not hurt the economy. bill clinton did it. we had six of the best years we've had in the last 60. >> it sounds like there's a bit of a yawn, a gap, between what crystal said on sunday and what rich trunka appeared to say or wanted to say yesterday outside of the white house. is it clear to you that labor and the left and moveon are being more rigid than some of the leading conservative thinkers? >> sure. and that's up to the president to manage that. if he gets the increase in rates or something very close to what he's asking for and gets substantial elimination of corporate loopholes and some individuals like romney plan, then we've got to go back to our base and say, yes, we've got to cut entitlements too because it's got to be part of a deal that has spending cuts at a significant level above the 1 trillion we've already done and revenue. look, unless we do 4 trillion to 5 trillion, we're not doing anything in my judgment that's particularly meaningful. >> walk me through the optics of what we'll see today. grover norquist last night said he thought ceos
, former chief of staff for bill clinton bowles on closing bell yesterday talking about the long-term consequences of the fiscal cliff. >> if we do get our house in order, the future of america is bright and can compete with the best and brightest wherever they are. if we don't, we're on our way to becoming a second-rate power. >> joined by illinois congressman peter ross couple. he sits on the ways and means committee and joins us with john harwood and myself at the white house. congressman, good morning. >> hey, good morning, great to be with you. >> we already have the president wishing the speaker a happy birthday. i guess baby steps. right? how do you think the tone is shaping up today? >> i think the tone is good. look. president obama won on tuesday last. the speaker of the house congratulated him and lid out a pathway for the president to lead the nation on how to avoid the fiscal cliff and transform us in to the world class status we want to stay and maintain. so far i think the language is good. there's opportunities i think to find common ground. there's no voices on t
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